Sportsfriends E3 Update

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Sportsfriends E3 Update

Hello PlayStation.Blog readers!

I’m here to give you an update on our coming PSN game, Sportsfriends. Here’s a new teaser:

Last time I posted here, we were still finishing up our Sportsfriends Kickstarter drive. Thanks to some of you, we were successfully funded, and since then we’ve been working on the games!

We’re at E3 this week showing some of the games, directly on PS3 hardware. As part of the E3 fanfare, we want to talk about some of the new features we’ve been working on.

To start with, let’s talk about Super Pole Riders, which has seen a radical overhaul since the free browser version. Below you can see one of the new arenas, illustrated by Bennett himself.

Super Pole Riders

You’ll note that there are four players there. The game now supports 1v1 and 2v2. Two-on-two is especially crazy, with poles flying everywhere. We’re also thrilled with the new control scheme. It feels nicely direct to rotate your pole using the analog stick.

Hokra, too, will feature some graphical updates and a bunch of new features and arenas. The new arena layouts – which feature walls, different numbers of goals, and “nets” that slow down the players – make the game even more replayable. Here’s a sneak peek at one of our favorite new arenas, Tokyo:


Ramiro is also working on an arena builder that lets you make and save your own custom arenas. Part of the idea is that we want players to be able to design their own “home court.”

Johann Sebastian Joust has also seen a graphical overhaul. Er, well, I’m not sure that “overhaul” is even the right word, since the alpha prototype doesn’t even have graphics! But we’re thrilled to announce that Montreal-based artist Dominique “Dom2D” Ferland is doing the visuals.

Johann Sebastian Joust

You might be asking yourself, “Why does J.S. Joust need graphics at all?” After all, it’s a game that’s about looking at each other, in the space in front of the screen. That’s true, but we wanted to frame the game in the right way and set the right mood. Dom’s animated baroque characters perfectly complement the Bach music, and we think they’ll provide a nice “entrance” into the game.

I’ve also been adding a slew of new gameplay features, including choose-your-own-music, a traitor mode, sudden death, freeze directives, and a resurrection power that allows dead players to bring themselves back to life if they remain still enough – that is, if the other players don’t interfere! Of course, you can still play the original game without any of the optional modes, but I wanted to allow players to tweak the base system. Oh, and there are some hidden “taunts,” but you’ll have to find them on your own…

Finally, the BaraBariBall team has been hard at work on the core game system, trying to make the combat as dynamic and replayable as possible. Read up on the new clashing system here in the online manual.


Noah has continued to show the game at exhibitions and tournaments around the world (including UFGT in Chicago), gathering valuable playtest data. In case you’re looking for some high-level tournament action, we’re planning to bring BaraBariBall to EVO this year – stay tuned.

That about does it for this update. We’re still hoping for a Fall release, and can’t wait to share these games with all of you!

For news on the development progress and upcoming events, follow us on Twitter or our blog.

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